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Taiwan Church News

3259 Edition

August 11 - August 17, 2014

Headline News

 

Cross-religious Ceremonies Hold For The Victims of Peng-hu Airplane Crash and Kaohsiung Big Blast

 

Reported by Chen Yi-hsaun

 

On the rainy August 12, a cross-religious service was held to commemorate the victims of Peng-hu airplane crash and Kaohsiung big blast. Rev. Lo Ren-quei, Moderator of PCT General Assembly, together with 20 pastors across denominations, paying tribute and deliver their blessings to the victims and their families. Under the comforting hymn, Closer To God, played by Kaohsiung Symphony Orchestra, Rev. Lo recited the poem written by Rev. Chen Shen-chen in prayer for the deceased and genuinely touched the heart of the crowd in this solemn ceremony.

 

12 hour after Kaohsiung Big Blast, PCT immediately established an emergency accommodation contact center at San-duo Presbyterian Church helping to care and concern the inflicted citizens. Though this emergency center has finished her temporary task on August 8, the PCT Church and Society Committee still urged PCT members to offer their intercession and donation for the subsequent re-construction works.

 

Rev. Lyim Hong-Tiong, when he came to visit San-duo emergency center, expressed his peronal deep thanks and appreciation for all kinds of volunteer efforts and resources from all involved churches. To efficiently engage within the future re-construction, Rev. Lyim encourage both Church and Society Committee of Kaohsiung and So-san Presbytery could work together closely and support Kaohsiung City Government's operation in human resources and related demands. "Taiwan is one body just like Church is one", Rev. Lyim emphasized.

 

Translated by Peter Wolfe

 

Rev. Lo Ren-quei(center), with 20 pastors across denominations, representing Taiwan's Christian Church to pay their tributes and blessings for the victims and families of Peng-hu Airplane Crash and Kaohsiung Big Blast.

 

Photo by Chen Yi-hsaun

 

 
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Taiwan Church News

3258 Edition

August 4 - August 10, 2014

Editorial

 

Let Us Wake Up From The Myth Of Economic Development After Kaohsiung Big Blast

 

The devastating chemical propene big blast, due to a serious leakage, in the deep night on July 31 at Kaohsiung city of Southern Taiwan, took away 30 precious lives and injured about 300 people with incalculable household destruction and damages. Such unprecedented ever industrial accident, happened within an internationally famous harbor-city, pointed to the tragic development of Taiwan's petroleum chemical industry under the hegemonic slogan of economic development.

 

When Chinese Petroleum Corp.(CPC) established The First Naphata Cracking Plant in 1968, Kaohsiung accepted her historic but tragic role as a factory city of petrochemical industry as one of the Ten Major Infrastructure Projects. Up to now, Kaohsiung supplies about 70% of material products for Taiwan's petro-chemical industry and creates over 300 thousands jobs for this city's residents. Yet, over NTD 100 billions (97%) of the industry's business tax or sales revenues has to be consecrated to Taipei city, as most HQ offices of those major petro-chemical corps are located there; Kaohsiung could only own very limited resources and about 3 billions tax income (3%) from these petro-chemical industry.

 

In other words, except the apparent jobs vacant supplied by the petroleum industry, most risks and dangers among petro-chemical production are all transferred to Kaohsiung. So, the residents of Kaohsiung not only have to bear the risks of the rampant industrial chemical pipelines running under city, but also those of air-pollution among fuel consumption and those of poisonous waste. Not just people will have cancers from these pollution, a lot of environmental disasters will show up around the corner including green house effects, sour rain, water pollution, marine ecological holocaust and etc.

 

Because of the dense population on this space-limited island, Taiwan tragically chose to possess the petro-chemical industry under the slogan of economical development. And now, due to our overlook and mis-management to maintain the underground pipeline systematically, this devastating big blast holocaust is finally culminated in our never satisfied pursuit and covet for material goods in the name of economic development.

 

No matter what kinds of disasters lying ahead of us, be it petro-chemical or even nuclear, may God lead us to wake up from the hegemonic myth of economical development. Let us not just take serious the bitter fruits resulted by economical injustice, but also be willing to practice the true economics in Christian faith - throwing off "dishonest scales" and "false weights" to care for the aged, the oppressed, the women and the children!

 

 
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Taiwan Church News

3258 Edition

August 4 - August 10, 2014

Headline News

 

PCT Responds To Kaohsiung Big Blast With Care and Shelter

 

Reported from Kaohsiung by Chen Yi-hsaun and Song Cheng-yo

 

The unprecedented ever chemical big blast in the July 31 deep night at Kaohsiung, due to a great leakage of propene resulted from a suspected inappropriate hasty operation, claimed at least 30 lives, injured 309 people and devastated thousands of buildings and households. At 200 thousands Kaohsiung residents are seriously affected in their traffics and daily lives by this accident.

 

Rev. Hwang Zhe-hong, Director of PCT Church and Society Committee, together with his secretary Rev. Lin Wei-lien and the related pastors at So-shan presbytery, immediately set up an emergency accommodation contact center at San-duo Presbyterian Church at 12:00 am on August 1. And this emergency center is established to accumulate the human resources, material supplies and offer the necessary accommodations and pastoral care.

 

Many PCT pastors from Kaohsiung So-shan Presbytery convenes at San-duo Presbyterian Church to pray for the victims and their families around 3:00 pm on August 1. Then, they go to visit the injured patients at 802 Navy Hospital and Chang-Gung Memorial Hospital. As some patients need more rest to restore from this drastic blast shocks, many pastors could only gather at the hospital's prayer rooms to expres their concern and care. Rev. Lee Zhi-ling, Moderator of Kaohsiung Presbytery, while blessing for the PCT co-workers serving at the prayer rooms at each hospital to gain more strength from the Lord during their service,  praying for the victims of the big blast to gain the healing and peace from God.

 

In the afternoon of August 3, about 120 PCT church youths, from Kaohsiung College Student Center, Kaohsiung Aboriginal College Student Center and different local congregations from Fon-san Si-men Church, Chien-gin Church, Nan-tze Church, Kao-nan Church, San-duo Church, Zuo-dong Church, Shin-seng Church and etc., assemble at the emergency accommodation contact center. They go to visit the inflicted residents in the neighboring communities and sing the hymns to show their care and concern.

 

In the annual ministry meeting of Pine Life University hold at Kaohsiung on August 5,  Rev. Lou Zen-quei, PCT Moderator of General Assembly and General Headmaster of Pine Life University, together with Mr. Chou Tse-ching, President of Board of Directors for Pine Life University, jointly go to emergency accommodation contact center at San-duo Presbyterian Church to give their utmost concern and donations to the victims and their families.

 

Translated by Peter Wolfe

 

 

 


 

 

Photo by Chen Yi-hsaun, Hseih Huei-Juan and Song Cheng-yo

 

 

 
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Taiwan Church News

3258 Edition

August 4 - August 10, 2014

Church Ministry

 

PCT Members Mobilized To Reach Out And Give Intercession For The Victims Of Kaohsiung Big Blast

 

Reported TCN Staff

 

In the deep night of July 31, due to a suspected 4-inch pipeline carrying propene having a great leakage, a series of gas explosions are ferociously erupted in the south-eastern Kaohsiung urban city. This unprecedented ever big blast in Kaohsiung, covering an urban area about dozens of kilometers square, claims the lives of 28 people, 3 missing, 309 injured and 752 buildings are seriously destroyed or damaged. The bombast-like roads also stop the daily business of 1,257 small shops and affects the traffics about 200 thousands people.

 

10 am on August 1, Director of the Church and Society Committee of PCT So-san Presbytery immediately hold a meeting at Lin-deh Presbyterian Church to respond this emergency. PCT members are urged to reach out or give their intercession for the victims of this accident in the impending Sunday Service on August 3.

 

San-duo Presbyterian Church, located within the inflicted blasted area, is also requested by Kaohsiung Social Affairs Bureau as a supporting station to accommodate the affected citizens at 10:12 am on August 1. And San-duo Presbyterian Church promptly set up the required service facility at 12:00 am to meet the community demands. San-duo Presbyterian Church's phone call number is (07) 713-9463, and her fax number is (07) 761-1687.

 

To learn more information about Kaohsiung Big Blast and how you can help, readers are suggested to visit the Facebook website of PCT Church and Society Committee: www.facebook.com/pctsociety

 

Translated by Peter Wolfe

 

 

One street scenario after the eruption gigantic explosion and bombast.

 

Before San-duo Presbyterian Church, PCT pastors and members give their intercession for the inflicted victims and families.

 

 

One street scenario after the eruption gigantic explosion and bombast.

 

 

Inside the chapel of Kaohsiung Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, PCT pastors and members give their intercession for the big blast victims and their families.

 
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Taiwan Church News

3257 Edition

July 28  - August 3, 2014

Editorial

 

 

Editorial: A New And Independent Country Without Racist Chauvinism

 

 

In Taiwan's Constitutional Amendment, effective from August 1st 1994, the name of "the aboriginal people" was officially recognized instead of "the mountain people" used in Taiwan society for decades.

 

On July 27th, when a 20th years' commemoration assembly was held for the recognition of Taiwanese aboriginal people, former President Lee Teng-huei, who played a critical role in this event, was invited to deliver a speech. Lee emphasized the recognition of the aboriginal people as a very important step toward Taiwan's democracy and also an indispensable basis to build up Taiwan's subjective sovereignty. Lee firmly believed that the different people living on Taiwan should help each other to establish an abundantly plural and democratic society.

 

Yet, when the past 20 years is retrieved after the recognition of the aboriginal people, who are still suffering lots of exploitation and oppression from mainstream Taiwan society, we cannot help but say that the last mile of our faith confession - to establish a new and independent country - should be a mindset to protest against "Chinese racist chauvinism" fashioned in Taiwan society, if we are serious enough to practice the recognition of the aboriginal people as an important building block in Taiwan's democracy.

 

Walis Nokan, a famous Taiwanese aboriginal writer specialized in indigenous narratives and related inflicted histories, demonstrated his critical reflection about the Chinese racist chauvinism in his recently published new book - "Walis' Micro-fiction". In one of his short story, Aftermath, he writes: The fate of Ma-lai within the aboriginal tribe is same as the timbre robbers from the Chinese plain villagers. They are all caught by the police in the the same mountain and got sentenced in the same court. But, the timbre robbers got six months sentence which could be paid with money as a fine ; Ma-lai got 18 months jail which means no parole or possibility to pay the fine instead.

 

Why? Ma-lai politely whispered to the judge in an incredible surprise and despair: Timbre robbers took away the precious rare trees, yet we the indigenous just picked up the ganoderma grown from the rotten trees bequeathed by ancestors. Timbre robbers extinguish the particular species without caring the environment; yet our gathering of ganoderma is a sustainable economy. The judge gave Ma-lai in a cold-blooded answer: This is law! Stupid! In addition, why you didn't apply a lawyer to defend for yourself?

 

This story makes us feel sad and sigh for the fate of the indigenous people in modern Taiwan. Somehow, current mainstream Taiwan society may feel enough material supply and social care have been given to the aboriginal society. But, as a matter of fact, Taiwan society always separate themselves away from the aboriginal society with a top-down authoritarianism and patronage mentality.

 

The so called 400 years of Taiwan history, mainly propounded by Hok-loh-lang, is actually an aboriginal history full of blood and tears. Before the arrival of of Chiang Kai-sheik's  KMT regime in 1949, there had already decades of or even hundreds years of hatred and bitterness accumulated within the aboriginal people due to the exploitation and oppression from Taiwan's Chinese society. Tension, mistrust and reckless aggressiveness still dominates the relationships between the mainstream Taiwan society and the aboriginal people. Even the basic human rights of the aboriginal to live safely on their own land becomes a luxury.

 

From the eyes of the indigenous, the stereotyped Taiwanese from plain villages maliciously buy out their lands in the plain and sell their daughters into city as prostitutes. So, how can you blame the aboriginal people not to vote for "the chief of the Taiwanese"? Only we can reach out to help each other, then Taiwan Democracy can stride in a steady march!


 
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Taiwan Church News

3257 Edition

July 28 - August 3, 2014

Headline News

 

Breaking Ethnic Barriers, Tong-pu Aboriginal Church Brings Good News To Holohlang and Hakka Communities

 

Reported By Chiu Kuo-rong

 

Tong-pu Church, located in Hsin-yi village of Nan-tou county, which is also a PCT member church in Central Bunun Presbytery, starts to preach Jesus' good news to the Holohlang and Hakka communities in her neighboring villages since Morakot Typhoon swept across central and southern Taiwan in 2009. Now, the baptized members from Holohlang and Hakka communities has steadily reached to 33 persons within this initially aboriginal-dominated church.

 

Rev. Chhuen Wan-bao, pastor of Tong-pu church, said: As our church was seriously damaged within Morakot Typhoon, many churches across Taiwan started to donate for us. Even when we have recovered from the wreckage, there was still many donation remitted in. With these abundant grace and offerings from God, our neighbor - Sen-muh Village - immediately came to our mind. Though they are mostly Holohlang and Hakka, not the same ethnics people as us - Bunun tribe, yet we still decided to transferred 150 thousands NT dollars to at least 10 families. This is because they were more seriously inflicted and desperately needed the resources. And this decision became the starting point of our evangelical work in Holohlang and Hakka communities. In 2010, next year after Morakot Flood, Tong-pu church formally decided to set up an evangelical station, Love Giving Evangelical Center, passing the love of God to the communities of Holohlang and Hakka.

 

Since 2010, Love Giving Evangelical Center has cooperated with Tong-pu community in providing various kinds of social service, including the project to care for the elders within house , Juvenile/Children Character Formation Camp and etc. Especially, this is the 5th year that Tong-pu church assisted by Los Angels Methodist Church holding the annual English Summer Camp in Dong-fu Primary School. And there are 220 school children attending this activity just in July. Rev. Chhuen remarks, through the evangelical efforts of Love Giving Evangelical Center, the name of aboriginal Tong-pu church deeply impresses and change the minds of Holohlang and Hakka communities in her neighbor villages.

 

Translated by Peter Wolfe

Love Giving Evangelical Center, established PCT Tong-pu Church in 2010, attracts non-aboriginal believers from Sen-muh and Dong-fu villages to attend the service every Wednesday and Sunday.

 

Photo by Rev. Chhuen Wan-bao

 

 
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